On Saturday I assisted Steve Savage who had an exhibition at a Brighton Science Festival event at
. The event was designed for 7-14 years. There were plenty of interesting stands in the hall and classrooms. We were in a room with The Friends of Shoreham Beach supports the Local Nature Reserve, which was a good match. Hove Park Upper School
Steve’s program uses Ed the Bear, who provides an opportunity to talk to children about local and global wildlife conservation issues and what we can do about them.
The display was divided into following components.
Why is Ed the Bear travelling? Ed discovered that his local beach, Shoreham Beach Local Nature Reserve, home to UK and globally rare vegetated shingle habitat, is in danger from global issues such as climate change. He decides to travel to other seas and oceans to help him understand these global problems, how they might affect his local beach and what could be done about it. In 2009-2010 he visited many places, saw fascinating wildlife, some maritime history, and conservation threats.
Ocean Biodiversity On the way he discovers amazing wildlife both locally and globally. Majestic whales and albatross, playful sea otters, rare monk seals, turtles and much more. With his purpose built diving bell, he has dived on stunning coral reefs and ship wrecks.
Threats to the ocean Ed discovers that there are many threats to oceans which are caused by modern living. These include climate change which may cause sea levels to rise, and extreme weather conditions which kill coral reefs and disrupt food chains. He also learns about ocean acidification, which may threaten marine life, and marine debris polluting the oceans.
Helping the oceans He has also discovered what people are doing to help protect the oceans. He has visited a turtle hospital, helped with an oil spill and visited a laboratory where they are growing corals to replace a damaged reef.
Ed has worked with schools in the UK and globally, taken part in a meeting at the Volcanoes National Park in the Hawaiian Islands, participated in the Black Scuba Divers Youth Summit where young people have been following Ed’s adventures to learn about the ocean.
Living more sustainably Ed encourages children and adults to think about how they could do things differently to live more sustainably and have less impact on the oceans and the environment. They make a list and sign a pledge to Ed the Bear.
An experiment looks at the science behind ocean acidification. A weak acid (vinegar) dissolves a seashell.
If you want to find out more about the project, visit: http://adventuresofedthebear.blogspot.com/ which brings together Steve’s work as a biologist, environmental educator and children’s wildlife author.
This is a climate change event held in 2010: http://adventuresofedthebear.blogspot.com/2010_09_01_archive.html